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From resolving sleep apnea to easing TMJ pain, the many benefits of an airway focused dentist in Dana Point

Airway Focused Dentist at Mark A Cruz DDS in Dana Point Area
Airway Focused Dentist at Mark A Cruz DDS in Dana Point AreaPatients who live in and around Dana Point, CA, are fortunate to have a pioneer and leader in airway-focused dentistry in their own backyard. As a dentist who trains other dentists in this approach, Dr. Mark Cruz has exceptional knowledge and experience in identifying and resolving the many problems that arise due to a deficient or dysfunctional airway. An unobstructed airway is essential to move oxygen through the body. So, problems with the airways can have severe implications for your overall health and quality of life. 

The “airway-focused” difference

Our team‘s analysis and care transcend the teeth and gums and other services associated with conventional general dentistry. We appreciate that different components are connected to other tissues and structures. We cannot treat each “part” as isolated from the “whole.” In turn, following an examination at our office, we may determine that underlying airway issues contribute to the following conditions: 

  • Teeth-grinding and jaw-clenching (bruxism)
  • Excessive pressure on the jaw joints (Temporomandibular Joint symptoms)
  • Misaligned bite
  • Severe wear and tear on the teeth
  • Gum disease
  • Recessed gums
  • Relapse post-orthodontic treatment (teeth shift back into their pretreatment positions)
  • Fractures or cracks
  • Snoring
  • Sleep-disordered breathing (sleep apnea)

Depending on the cause of the dysfunction, airway impairment can also affect facial appearance and profile; for instance, the tongue’s position as a child’s face is developing can result in the jaw moving into a sometimes painful, forward position. In addition, the force from such poor posture can push a child’s head in such a way that it strains the neck and back. 

Our in-house thought leader on the subject, Dr. Cruz, may recommend any one of the following airway-focused dental services.

Oral appliances 

Customized devices are designed to slip into your mouth. They can reposition tissues that get in the way of unimpeded breathing when at rest. These appliances can also move the tongue, jaw, and other tissues to a proper position that promotes healthy posture and development. 

We are here to help Call us at (949) 661-1006 or Schedule an Appointment today.


Airway-focused dental care also accounts for the fact that orthodontic treatment, such as braces or aligners, is about more than restoring straight teeth and an attractive smile. By correcting how the teeth in your upper and lower jaws come together when you bite down, we also support unimpeded, healthy respiration. 

Behavioral “training” and lifestyle

Airway-centered conditions can be linked to a wide range of behaviors, habits, and lifestyle factors. For instance, healthy lifestyle choices (such as weight loss) can improve sleep-disordered breathing. Likewise, we can recommend techniques and exercises to discourage tongue-thrusting and other habits that affect jaw development and lead to airway problems later in life. 

The approaches, products, and technologies that we recommend are as wide-ranging as the symptoms and conditions that arise due to problems with the airway. You must contact our experts in airway-focused dental care today. We look forward to making a genuine difference in your (or your loved ones) life. (949) 661-1006.

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Meet Dr. Mark Cruz

Dr. Mark Cruz Dr. Mark Cruz graduated from the UCLA School of Dentistry in 1986 and started his dental journey in Monarch Beach. He is a well-known lecturer internationally, and he was a part-time lecturer at UCLA. He gives individual attention to each patient while creating a friendly and enjoyable dental experience. He makes the patient a part of the dental procedure, educating them about the problem at hand.

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